Worth A Look: 36.92%
Pretty Bad: 6.15%
Total Crap: 3.08%
5 reviews, 35 user ratings
by Dust For Eyes
Human Traffic takes us to a world that I am only vaguely interested in at best, but it helped reshape my opinion of that world.The rave scene. There was something I didn't like about it. First there is the drugs (which I'll get to in a second), and then there is the full-on hedonism of it all. A bunch a brain dead people behaving like brain dead sheep in a field with a driving brain dead beat blaring out at brain deadly ear splitting levels. I don't mind the music itself - some of it is great like Leftfield - but the vibe around it seems to be that nobody cares about anything and there was no thinking going on at all. I, on the other hand, insist on thinking about things.
"Something to rave about."
The drugs - An integral part of the rave scene. It's not something I simply choose not to get myself involved in. I don't have a Family-Values-Just-Say-No-Kids! attitude. It is something that actually gets me quite angry.
It's like one huge lie. The organisations behind the drugs industry - giant multinationals, albeit illegal ones - exploit the fears, insecurities, failures, and the need for a sense of belonging of its users. The organisations rob the users of their money, their freedom and even sometimes their lives to make millions - Billions even.
So rotten to the putrid core, they capitalise on the young and the disadvantaged and watch them risk all that they have. Drugs don't ruin everybody's lives, but the poorer you are, the less educated you are, the more vulnerable you are, the more likely these drugs - and the people around them - will destroy lives.
Hate them. Hate hate hate them.
Alcohol and cigarettes included.
If you take drugs you have been successfully fooled and exploited.
Human Traffic involves drugs and the rave scene and so should have been a film that I absolutely hated.
Yet the film does such a terrific and entertaining job that it was to soften my view of the rave scene. That is no small task for a film. It didn't change my view on drugs, but hey you can't have everything. I still enjoyed this excellent film.
Human Traffic is a weekend in the lives of five Welsh people living in Cardiff - Jip (Simm), Lulu (Pilkington), Koop (Parkes) Moff (Dyer) and Nina (Reynolds). Jip works in a clothing store, Koop, in a record store, Nina just quit her take away store job. Lulu joins in for the ride and Moff dedicates his efforts to slacker-dom full time when he's not dealing.
Most of them - with their rather ordinary jobs that they don't particularly enjoy - live for the weekend so they can let their hair down, escape the drudgery of their weekday world, and have some fleeting moments of rapture. The film shows us first the need for the weekend escape, the preparation, and then the weekend itself.
Director Kerrigan presents a vibrant film with energy and enthusiasm. Kerrigan is a fan of the life style - he has lived this film - and it shows. With its sharp humour and wit and the fresh cast doing a great job, Human Traffic is a vibrant and dynamic life style film.
The dipping in and out of reality scenes is a highlight. Pieces to camera, imagined conversations, clothes suddenly changing to suit a mood are interesting twists in the film. When one of the characters imagines a conversation or situation, we get to see it.
The reason that this film swayed my opinion of rave culture was that it showed the reason why the rave scene is needed. Lots of people in this world lead dreary robotic lives (shown to great effect in Nina's workplace) and they need to escape. It is not quite the world of brain dead hedonism as I used to think.
Oddly enough the film gives itself a bit of weight by addressing some things that you may not have expected from a film like this. The dangers of drugs are dealt with - albeit a bit glossed over - including paranoia and the come down. There is also the very surprising message that sex is best with someone you love.
The biggest surprise though is dealing with the problem that Kip has to deal with. Not often seen in any film let alone a film of this type. The fact that it is dealt with such good humour and frankness without dragging down the film is a credit to Kerrigan's writing and direction. It adds to the film and doing it so well makes it an even better one.A film that effects the opinions of it viewers is quite an accomplishment. Human Traffic did that for me, but just as noteworthy is that it is a film full of vitality and freshness. With a pounding soundtrack to boot, Human Traffic is an irresistibly catchy film.
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originally posted: 02/03/00 19:00:03